American singer Rufus Wainwright lived in fear he had been infected with the AIDS virus after he was raped at the age of 14.

The openly-gay WANT TWO star worried he had caught the fatal disease when he was attacked in London's Hyde Park after picking up a man in a bar in the late 1980s.

Wainwright, now 31, was staying with his musician father LOUDON WAINWRIGHT III, in the British capital at the time.

He explains, "I was terrified, AIDS was at its zenith.

"My mother and father could not even handle me being gay. We never talked about it really."

And Wainwright's first homosexual experience traumatised him so much, he embarked on a promiscuous spree.

He says, "I had a string of straight boyfriends.

"Guys I would occasionally have sex with, maybe only make out with, but never be allowed to say they were my boyfriend."

22/02/2005 17:57